So you want to build more relationships on LinkedIn with key decision-makers— how do you go about it? Cold messaging!
As it turns out, cold-calling isn’t just for sales. It’s also for expanding your network! But on LinkedIn, you won’t be picking up the phone— you’ll be sending DMs or InMail messages.
If you have a LinkedIn Premium account or purchase InMail Credits, you can DM anyone on LinkedIn, but it’s not so easy. There are dos and don’ts you should know about before you get started. Here are a few:
1. Do see if a mutual connection can introduce you before cold messaging someone
Always see if you have any common connections with the person you want to message. It’s much easier to start up a conversation with a stranger when there’s a common denominator! You can always ask your connection to set up a group chat to introduce you.
2. Don’t fake mutual connections where there are none
If you don’t have any mutual connections, that’s okay! Just be sure to be transparent about it and be your friendliest self. This brings us to our next point…
3. Do find something you have in common
LinkedIn is a free resource where you can learn so much about people’s professional experiences. You can learn about their career, educational background, and even their interests.
If you want to connect with someone you don’t know, see if your profiles overlap in any way. Maybe your friend went to their college? Or maybe you both worked in sales in the past? Strike up a conversation based on your commonalities!
The most important part is that you start by getting to know them, not by selling. If all else fails, you can always point out that you have a mutual connection and start up a convo that way.
4. Don’t have an agenda
Did you become friends with your current friends by asking them to buy car insurance? OF COURSE NOT! If you want to create a new connection, ditch your sales pitch and start by being a person.
5. Do keep it simple when cold messaging
Cold messages are more like texts than they are emails. Say what you have to say in a concise way!
6. Don’t leave a long message
A stranger’s messaging you out of the blue. Are you interested in reading a novel? Of course not! Short, simple messages aren’t only more appropriate, there’s a greater chance your stranger will read them. Stick to a basic intro and you’re golden!
7. Do provide value
When you’re cold messaging someone, it’s all about how you can offer value while not selling! If you’re promoting something in your first message, you’re already signaling that you’re not interested in building a relationship, just making a sale.
Be a resource for this stranger, and once that relationship grows organically, you can make it known that your product or service can help.
8. Don’t make your new connection carry the conversation
If you want to provide value and build a relationship, you’ll need to do most of the heavy lifting. Give your connection a reason to respond by asking them appropriate questions or even their expertise.
9. Do follow up
Relationships don’t build themselves. People go to work and get busy, so make sure to follow up and stay top of mind with your new connection.
10. Don’t ghost
If your first touchpoint hasn’t garnered a response, this doesn’t mean you should quit. People get busy, life events come up, or often— people just forget to respond! Don’t get discouraged and discontinue your messaging efforts. Send a follow-up message to show your interest is strong!